“More than 36 million U.S. adults lack basic English literacy skills.

A 1% rise in literacy skill scores can boost labor productivity by an estimated $225 billion per year.

Increased literacy can decrease U.S. annual healthcare costs by an estimated $230 billion per year.”

These are just some of the reasons why the Barbara Bush Foundation is calling for edtech developers to produce an app to transform the lives of low-literate adults with the launch of the Adult Literacy XPRIZE.

And Oxford Learning Solutions has entered.

The bar has been set high, and we need to have a fully-functioning app that can be used with existing smartphone devices by the end of 2016. And it also needs to change the lives of at least 1 in 10 low literate adults living in the US, within 12 months of using the software.

The app will be accessible, increase retention, and be able to meet a high demand.

What makes us feel so confident that we can succeed, where so many other place-based adult reading interventions have failed?

Because we already have a solid programme for younger learners, with all the data and testimonials to prove that it works.

If we can create an app that appeals to the adult learner, and draw on some of the engaging and motivational techniques that are so effective in the Easyread System, then we believe we are onto a winner.

As some of you may know, we’re also working on a younger version of the current programme that’s suitable for first-time readers, to set them on the right path for reading.

2016 is certainly looking exciting for our team. We’ll keep you updated along the way!

Happy new year to you and to our secret agents, from all the team here!

–          Maddie